Category: Student Issues

Let’s Talk: The RP/JAE Divide

By Tan Yu You (21S03H)

On the first day of Orientation last year, I remember one of the girls in my group sharing that one of her fears coming into RI was the divide between us and the students from the Raffles Programme (RP). 

Perhaps it was an offhand remark and she did not mean for it to be taken seriously, but this fear resonated well within the small, mismatched group of five students from the Joint Admissions Exercise (JAE) anxiously waiting to meet the RP students for the first time.

A Google search immediately reveals that this fear is very common among hopefuls aiming to enrol into Raffles Institution after receiving their O-level results. Yet, stories shared by ex-Rafflesians on online forums and discussion threads seem to offer conflicting views on whether this so-called divide is something worth fretting over. Case in point, a previous article published in 2018 on Raffles Press claims that “the RP/JAE divide dissolves very quickly” while this post on Reddit claims the other extreme.  

So, what might be the cause of this “RP/JAE divide”? 

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Cold-calling: For Better or for Worse?

By Sara Chia (21S03G)

The class is silent, and so are you. Your hands are cold, clammy, and you sink further into your jacket, staring furtively at your worksheet, hoping that it’ll somehow make you invisible. You can feel yourself tensing with every moment that goes by, and relief hits you the instant you hear a name that’s not yours being called.

Does that sound familiar? Does that one class that you’ve come to dread come to mind because of this very experience? You’re probably thinking about cold-calling. 

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Should the Dean’s List Return?

By Shaun Loh (21A01A)
Cover image by Neo Xin Yuan (21A01D)

Feeling traumatised by the recent Promos or Prelims? Wondering how you fared in comparison to your peers? Fear not! At least you don’t need to know how your peers did if you don’t ask.

Yet, once upon a time, when a worldwide pandemic only existed in the realm of science-fiction books, there was a Dean’s List—an esteemed record of the top 5% of students in each subject for any test or examination. This list would be placed on the notice board outside the Students Affairs Centre after every examination for students to see. 

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Of TikToks and I.G. Stories: the EJ-RI Perspective

By Shaun Loh (21A01A; RI), Tan Yu You (21S03H; RI), Jace Bong (20-E1; EJC), Leia Ong (20-U1; EJC), Nicole Chao (20-U5; EJC)
Cover image by Clarice Tan (21A01C)

This was written in collaboration with EJC Press as part of Cross Island Impressions, an inter-JC Press collaboration.

A common scenario earlier this year: walking about in school, the voice of a woman chanting “Renegade” would pierce our ears, prompting all listeners within earshot to break into jocular gyrating and dancing.  

Yes, earlier this year, when we could still interact with our friends without masks muffling our voices, when we could make TikToks during breaks, when we could hang out after school at Junction 8 in groups larger than five. Sadly, after the implementation of the circuit breaker measures, many of us feel robbed of these little joys of life. Even though school has resumed, there is still a sense of longing for things to go back to normal.

This is where social media comes into play. For the past three months or so, school culture has been reduced to student council Instagram accounts and online interactions with teachers. We are also relying on social media even more for personal interactions. Furthermore, this state of crisis has led us to increasingly use such platforms to keep abreast of current affairs. 

Yet, do we give too much credit to social media? Ultimately, what exactly is the extent of influence that social media wields over us?

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Let’s Talk (About Anxiety)

By Tay Jing Xuan (20S03C)
Photos courtesy of Ms Chua Kah Hwee (counsellor at RGC) and Raffles Photographic Society

When you step into the school compound, you might find that thoughts about grades, competitions and relationships start to plague you.

Let’s take it a step further. Do they already race through your mind at home, in the middle of lunch, or even out with friends? For some, the answer is most likely a yes. School brings with it tremendous amounts of stress to perform well in all aspects of our lives. Who wants to have a ‘U’ blemish their results slips, or to have a record they held broken by someone else? There is no respite from the multitude of stressors hounding us day by day, and some might find it hard to cope.

However, for some, this becomes more sinister. What seems to be a perfectly normal fear grows uncontrollable—insomnia hits out of nowhere when you were sleeping just fine the night before, or a small cry suddenly turns into a breathless, crushing panic. There can be no trigger because this fear has taken root so deeply that it is ever-present, even without you knowing.

As these worries turn into something more sinister, they change one’s behaviour along the way. Soon, the way one treats the stressors in their lives transforms into something else.

But what is this “something else”?

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